I am between 15 and 16 years of age, currently training in Shūkōkai karate, and am close to achieving my 1st Dan black belt. I was debating whether to try another style alongside my current training. What would you recommend?

  • 3
    There's never a single best answer to this question, so it might need to be closed, since it doesn't quite fit the context of Q&A that we're aiming for. However, the question might be changed to fit better. Why did the idea even cross your mind? Did you speak to your teacher about it?
    – Anon
    Feb 1, 2015 at 16:23
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    These sorts of questions are the type to get a wide range of opinions for answers. You should ask a more specific question. Think about what you're asking for. Some people who train in a primarily kicking and punching style prefer to stick to those kinds of arts, wanting to deepen their knowledge. Others want to broaden their knowledge by doing something completely different, such as a grappling style. If you have no idea if you should care about going deeper or broader (which one?), then that is your question. So please clarify. Feb 1, 2015 at 16:25
  • I wish to broaden my knowledge of martial arts, while also maintaining my karate study, what would you recommend? @SteveWeigand Feb 4, 2015 at 16:53
  • I recommend looking around. Literally open the phone book and see what's available near you. Go to those schools. See their classes. Talk with the instructors. Kung-fu styles might be interesting to you after karate, to see where karate came from and to compare and contrast. After that, or instead of that, maybe something like Gracie Jiujitsu. It all depends on what strikes your fancy. (pun intended) Feb 4, 2015 at 21:14

3 Answers 3


My opinion would be for you to attend some trial classes and have a feel of what suits you. Some people would like to try something that has a familiar feel them, in your case, it would be something like kick boxing or etc. Others would like to try something that is totally foreign to them, such as Wrestling or BJJ.

Whatever you choose, do try to 'unlearn' whatever you know from you previous art. Try to be like a newborn, absorbing whatever things they teach, even if it contradicts to what you know. As you get better and more experience, slowly integrate what you have learned in Karate and see what works and what don't.

Coming from a mainly 'stand-up' background, I was like a fish out of water doing BJJ. Things like 'center of gravity' or 'stances' doesn't have much role in it. Instead things like 'leverage' have a more significant impact.


How far from the tree do you want to fall off?

Are you looking to go way deeper into the way you already took? Then I would suggest you to try a different Karate style that feeds or is feeded by Shukokai. Goju-Ryu for example, or a different approach like Shotokan.

If you are looking to be a more complete martial artists, I guess the sensitive way would be to go either towards aikido or jiu-jitsu for throws and floor fighting techniques, towards Kyokushin karate for hardening and full contact training, or towards some styles of wushu (kung fu) like Wing Chun for speed and short-range swift attacks.

Last but not least, another suggestion might be to take an advanced technique or group of techniques of your style, or from a relative style of your own, and specialize yourself in such techniques towards perfection.

Just remember, sometimes the fruit must fall off the tree before it can serve its own purpose.


Set your priority with mission in your mind and then you would be able to solve your problem. But if you are trying to prepare yourself for special event Or Fight then be specific about that, Must ask from your trainer cause he knows well about you - mean the strength and weaknesses.

  • Welcome to Martial Arts SE! I don't really understand your first sentence. Could you please clarify?
    – THelper
    Feb 2, 2015 at 11:59

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